What’s up, Doc? CalArts celebrates 100th Birthday of Director and Animator Chuck Jones
Chief Creative Officer at Pixar and Walt Disney Animation Studios, John Lasseter, will provide remarks at a special screening of his favorite Chuck Jones cartoons.
Fun fact: Both Chuck Jones and John Lasseter are “Calartians.” Jones attended the Chouinard Art Institute which is one of CalArts’ two predecessor institutions. Lasseter graduated from the CalArts School of Film/Video Character Animation Program in 1979.
CalArts was recently called the “the Harvard Business School of animation” by the Los Angeles Times. Nearly all the big names in the field, from Pixar's brain trust to an array of Disney directors and executives, are graduates of CalArts' Animation Program.
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Valencia, CA, August 29 - Chuck Jones, creator of innovative, hilarious and wildly popular cartoons staring Bugs Bunny, Road Runner and many more, will be remembered at a screening and reception celebrating his 100th birthday. Jones attended the Chouinard Art Institute which merged with the Los Angeles Conservatory of Music in 1961 to become California Institute of the Arts (CalArts). He was a member of CalArts Board of Trustees from 1968-1971. In celebration of his centennial year, CalArts honors this iconic artist who is part of the Institute's extended family. Chief Creative Officer at Pixar and Walt Disney Animation Studios, and CalArts alumnus, John Lasseter will present remarks and screen some of his favorite Chuck Jones cartoons. Proceeds of the event benefit the Joe Ranft CalArts Alumni Scholarship Fund.
The event takes place at REDCAT (Roy and Edna Disney CalArts Theater) in downtown Los Angeles on Wednesday, September 26 at 8 pm. Tickets: $50, available at calarts.edu/chuckjones.
The evening features Lasseter’s selection of Jones’ classic Warner Bros. cartoons. In a recent New York Times interview, Lasseter discussed Jones’ enduring appeal. “His comic timing is the best it’s ever been in cinema. He’s a master at that. His work was so funny, and he entertained adults as well as kids. I still watch his cartoons today, and they’re just as funny as ever.”
Chuck Jones died at the age of 89 in February 2002. In a career spanning over 60 years, he created more than 300 animated films, winning three Oscars as director, and in 1996, an honorary Oscar for Lifetime Achievement. During the Golden Age of animation, Jones helped bring to life many of Warner Bros. most beloved characters—Daffy Duck, Elmer Fudd and Porky Pig. The list of characters he originated includes Wile E. Coyote, Marvin Martian, Pepe le Pew and Michigan J. Frog. In 1999 Jones established the Chuck Jones Center for Creativity, designed to recognize, support, and inspire continued excellence in art and the art of classic character animation.
Commenting on Jones’ legacy, film director Peter Bogdanovich noted, “since he never made topical jokes, his stuff remains, like all good fables and only the best art, both timeless and universal."
John Lasseter is Chief Creative Officer, Walt Disney and Pixar Animation Studios; and Principal Creative Advisor, Walt Disney Imagineering. He is a two-time Academy Award®-winning director and creatively oversees all films and associated projects from Walt Disney and Pixar Animation Studios. Lasseter made his feature directorial debut in 1995 with Toy Story, the first-ever feature-length computer-animated film and, since then, has gone on to direct A Bug’s Life, Toy Story 2 and Cars. He returned to the driver’s seat in 2011, directing Cars 2. In his role as Principal Creative Advisor for Walt Disney Imagineering, Lasseter was instrumental in bringing the beloved characters and settings of Radiator Springs to life for Disneyland Resort guests with the successful 2012 launch of Cars Land, an exciting new 12-acre expansion at Disney California Adventure Park. Lasseter was part of the inaugural class of the Character Animation program at California Institute of the Arts and received his B.F.A. in film in 1979.